Saturday 4 October 2014
Stanley L. Cohen is long-time social justice attorney and activist. For ten years he has been subjected to aggressive investigation and harassment by various agencies of the United States federal government, ultimately leading to criminal indictments being filed against him in two jurisdictions, relating to income tax matters.
On April 14, 2014 following years of litigation, enormous expense and tremendous stress to his family and his practice, he accepted a deal that includes pleading guilty to impeding the IRS tax code. He will be sentenced in October or shortly thereafter. He is now facing 18 months in prison.
The political nature of this prosecution is evident from the severity of the charges leveled against Cohen for underlying acts many of which are not even alleged to be illegal in and of themselves (for example accepting cash payments from clients, or keeping cash in an office safe), or are as benign and common as allowing clients to barter labor for legal services.
It is apparent that the motivation driving these charges is not taxes, but is in fact retaliation for Mr. Cohen’s years of standing up to governments on behalf of people and peoples’ movements. These charges are clearly intended to silence and shut down his consistent efforts to assist the politically unpopular and socially marginalized.
Stanley Cohen’s sentence is set for mid-November at the Federal District Court for the Northern District of New York. We are collecting letters of support on his behalf. Please submit your letter by October 24, 2014 so that it can be included in the submission to the Court.
Thank you for your support Justice for Stanley Cohen
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